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April 5, 2016

Originally featured in Thinking Bigger Magazine - March 2015

As a small business owner, there may come a time, if it hasn’t already, when you need money and you need it now.

There are a variety of funding options available: banks, home equity, the SBA, friends and family, investors, accounts receivable factoring, credit cards—the list goes on and on.

However, what if you have exhausted all of those sources and still have a short-term need for cash? As you begin the quest to find financing, you may consider alternative funding—an option becoming increasingly popular for small businesses across the country. 

 Because the traditional banking system’s regulations have made it increasingly difficult, time-consuming and, in some cases, impossible for a small business to get quick funding from their bank, this niche financing  industry has emerged, filling a need that many  primary funding resources have overlooked. 

What Exactly Is Alternative Funding?

Lending Club and Kabbage are two examples of companies providing alternative funding services. These, as well as other organizations in this niche, are primarily online resources focused on providing fast and flexible short-term financing to small businesses.

Typical lending ranges from $10,000 to $100,000. After the process has started, it usually takes about a day for the company to receive financing, assuming all the funding conditions have been met.

Kansas City is actually home to an alternative funder, CapFusion. Though the company provides funding to small businesses across the country, the company’s founders are based in Kansas City. And they may pay extra attention if they receive an application from a business that is located here, too.

Why Isn’t Everybody Using Alternative Funding?

There are pros and cons to all funding options, but the main cons associated with alternative funding include the associated costs, the dollar limits and the relative experience of the lender.

The costs of these loans can be significantly more than annualized rates associated with conventional financing. Using alternative funding, a typical transaction’s annualized interest expense is anywhere from 30 percent to 50 percent. Remember, there is a reason this niche is referred to as “alternative funding” and not primary funding.

Additionally, the players in this space typically lend in much lower dollar amounts than other types of financing. The thought behind this being, once a company has stabilized its cash flow and has time to patiently search for the best conventional financing arrangement, it will no longer need alternative financing. 

Lastly, as a relatively new niche, many companies in this space are relatively young. Some small business owners simply may prefer working with more established, well-recognized institutions.

What You Should Do

As if running a business doesn’t present enough challenge to the small business owner, I’ll add one more. It is important to understand all the financing options available to you and the pros and cons before you make a decision. Put in the time and effort to analyze your alternative financing options, the same way you would research other goods and services.

While working with an online alternative funding source may be your best solution, make sure your needs align with the company’s capabilities, and make certain you are working with the lending company that will be providing the financing, versus a broker, which will lead to substantially more costs.

Learn more about the author of this article, Daniel Kjergaard and our Entrepreneurial Services Group.




April 1, 2016

CBIZ & MHM Memphis
will host its annual full-day CFO & Controller Conference on Tuesday, May 17, 2016.  This year’s conference is focused on “The New CFO” and will highlight topics geared towards the ever-changing business role of the CFO.

The event will take place at the FedEx Institute of Technology on the University of Memphis campus.  The conference will qualify for 7 hours of CPE credit.  Pre-registration is required, and interested attendees can register now online.

The Honorable Jim Strickland, Mayor of Memphis, will provide the keynote address. Other topics will include:

  • Executive Compensation
  • Data Automation
  • Wellness Programs
  • Trends in Tax Planning
  • And much more…

The program will close with a panel of local CFOs who play a strategic role at their respective companies and throughout their career.

We are expecting a sold out event, so RSVP today by clicking here!

Stay tuned for future posts about our presenters and topics leading up to the event.




March 30, 2016
There has been a renewed interest in the distinction between employees and independent contractors.  Bryan Koch, Managing Director at CBIZ & MHM Memphis, wrote an article discussing how this renewed interest can be attributed to the Affordable Care Act, as many of the provisions associated with the law relate to the number of employees working at a company.

In a previous article, the tests used to differentiate between employees and independent contractors were discussed.  In this article, Bryan outlines four different fines and penalties that can be levied by the DOL if a worker is misclassified:

  1. Federal Income Tax
  2. Federal Insurance Contributions Act (FICA)
  3. Unemployment Tax
  4. Payroll Tax

Given the focus on this ACA-related topic, businesses should be aware of how they classify employees versus independent contractors.  In order to avoid penalties and fines, it is important to stay up to date with changes in the tax code— especially with the consultation of a tax professional.

For the full article on our CBIZ Insights & Resources, click here.

To discuss how these potential penalties for misclassification can affect your business, contact Bryan at 901.685.5575 or bkoch@cbiz.com.




March 29, 2016

The optimal sale price for a business reflects all of the components that helped the business secure its marketplace position. In Step 3 of the Five Steps to Selling Your Business, co-authored by Tampa Bay Managing Director, Dave Enick, the significance of identifying physical, financial and intangible assets and putting an objective purchase price on them is discussed

Valuing a business can take many forms, and management will need to carefully consider which approach to select. A typical business valuation uses discounted future cash flows as the basis of its estimation. Determining which formula works best for a business and protecting value early in the process is critical to the success of a transaction.

Many factors are taken into consideration when determining the ultimate purchase price for an operation. Additionally, time at the end of the valuation process needs to be spent to evaluate how the price point for a business matches up to objectives for the sale. The value determined might indicate a need to readjust priorities for the timing or type of sale.

For more information about the five step process and valuing your business objectively, contact Dave Enick at denick@cbiz.com or 727.572.1400.



March 25, 2016
The Memphis Business Journal’s Table of Experts discussion for March 2016 focused on Tax & Investments. Eustis Corrigan, Senior Managing Director for the Memphis Office of CBIZ & MHM served as the tax panelist.  Other panelists included Becky Bridgmon of Morgan Stanley and Staci Jackson of Paragon Bank.

Moderated by Bryce Corporation’s CFO Ramon Marus, the discussion started off with a reference to the ‘year of uncertainty’ in 2016.  Eustis shared how businesses are strengthening their balance sheets and making wise investments in the midst of an ‘uncertain year’ with a potential recession ahead.  When asked about changes in the tax law that could affect businesses this year, Eustis mentioned the PATH Act, R&D tax credit, Section 179 deduction, and charitable distribution change with IRAs.

Specifically referencing the R&D tax credit, Corrigan stated “In a year of uncertainty, we have more certainty long term because many tax credits are now permanent.  It used to be that the credit would get close to expiring each year and taxpayers and accounting firms would be on pins and needles waiting for Congress to extend it. Now it’s permanent.”

In further discussion, Eustis shared how current tax laws are affecting them, the tax advantages of 401k participation, and the importance of strategy in tax planning.

To read the full discussion from the experts, click here.

If you have any further questions for Eustis Corrigan, contact him at 901.685.5575 or ecorrigan@cbiz.com.




March 22, 2016

Steve Grove, Tax Managing Director for the Tampa Bay office, published an article, 4 Tax Deductions You Don’t Want to Miss, in Next Avenue last week. In the article, Steve provides insight into tax write-offs that can boost your refund or trim your taxes due.

Knowing which deductions and credits you can claim on your tax return isn’t easy these days. To help you avoid paying any more in taxes than necessary, Steve discusses four often-overlooked tax deductions that you may be entitled to claim on your 2015 return:

  • Itemized Deductions of State Income and Sales Taxes
  • A State Income Tax Overpayment
  • The Deduction for the Self-Employed
  • Write-offs for Business Machinery and Equipment

To make the most out of your 2015 tax return, be sure to carefully consider the full range of opportunities, so you receive any tax savings you’re due.

For questions regarding tax deductions or returns, please contact Steve Grove at sgrove@cbiz.com or 727.572.1400. To view the full Next Avenue article, click here.



March 18, 2016
Lloyd Grissinger, Tax Practice Leader and Lead Managing Director for the Memphis office, was recently featured in an article from GoBankingRates regarding the ’15 Biggest Tax Problems for Single-Income Families’.


Single-income families can face a variety of problems at tax time. These problems can lead to smaller refunds or bigger tax bills.  This article outlines 15 problems that single-income families might face, and what they can possibly do to avoid the problem or lessen the impact.

In regards to filing single versus head of household, Grissinger said "single parents can hurt themselves at tax time if they file as a single taxpayer rather than head of household.”  He added, “to qualify as head of household, you must be not married, pay more than half the cost of housing for a year, and have your dependent live with you more than half the year.”

Lloyd also comments on different tips and tax benefits for single-income families cautioning individuals to track any and all information related to the donations.

To read the full article on GoBankingRates.com, click the button below.

If you have more questions regarding filing for single-income families, contact Lloyd at lgrissinger@cbiz.com or 901-685-5575.





March 16, 2016

Manufacturers face pressure to be efficient. As global competition in the manufacturing space continues to accelerate, many in the industry are looking for every opportunity to streamline cost.  Mark Baricos, Managing Director at CBIZ & MHM Memphis, wrote an article discussing three key elements that should be considered in evaluating a well-defined tax strategy.

Recent changes to tax provisions now offer additional opportunities to minimize tax burden. Passed in December 2015, the Protecting Americans against Tax Hikes (PATH) Act makes permanent several tax deductions that previously had to be renewed each year and includes longer-term extensions of others.

In the article, Mark outlines three ways manufacturers can take advantage of these PATH act changes.  Manufacturers that operate internationally should take particular note of the Act’s extension of several tax reduction opportunities for conducting business abroad.  The legislation could mean the chance to lower a company’s overall effective tax rate, bringing significant benefits to operations.

For the full article on our CBIZ Insights & Resources, click here.

To discuss what the PATH Act means to your business, contact Mark at 901.685.5575 or mbaricos@cbiz.com.




March 14, 2016

For the 11th consecutive year, CBIZ & MHM Tampa Bay has been named one of the 2016 Best Places to Work by the Tampa Bay Business Journal.  Sixty finalists were selected by an independent research firm employing various research techniques to measure and manage employee engagement, loyalty and retention.  The employee survey measures engagement categories focusing on items including team effectiveness, trust in senior leaders, feeling valued, manager effectiveness, compensation and benefits.

Bill Tapp, Senior Managing Director, commented, “We could not receive this honor without the amazing, talented and devoted CBIZ & MHM Tampa Bay employees.  We appreciate all their hard work and dedication. You cannot be the “Best” without the best – we truly have the best.”

As part of this year's nomination process and employee engagement surveys, CBIZ & MHM Tampa Bay was named a finalist in the category for biggest companies.  Scores and ranking will be announced at an awards ceremony at Topgolf Tampa on April 21st.

For more information about joining our award-winning Tampa Bay team, visit our Careers page.



March 9, 2016

CBIZ MHM Tampa Bay will host an inaugural half-day CFO & Controller Conference focused on the CFO’s role in mergers and acquisitions.  As a result of the significant role that mergers and acquisitions play in corporate growth strategy, the function of the CFO has greatly expanded.  This dynamic environment demands that the CFO play a strategic role in providing financial perspective, building partnerships, and working closely with chief executives and board members.

The event will take place May 11th at USF Health, Center for Advanced Medical Learning and Simulation in downtown Tampa.  The conference will qualify for 4 hours of CPE credit.  Pre-registration is required, and attendees can register now online for a fee of $50, which includes the cost of the conference, breakfast, lunch, and parking. 

For more information and to register:
https://tampabaycfoconference.eventbrite.com/

Stay tuned for future posts about our presenters and topics leading up to the event.



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